On July 25, the group Bluegrass Values debuted two television ads in support of Kentucky Attorney General Andy Beshear (D). These are the first ads released by the group, which is affiliated with the Democratic Governors Association, in the Kentucky gubernatorial election. Beshear faces Gov. Matt Bevin (R) and John Hicks (L) in the general election on November 5.
The following day, Putting Kentucky First launched an ad in opposition to Beshear. The Republican Governors Association-affiliated group has already released five ads opposing Beshear and one supporting Bevin during the campaign. A report from Medium Buying on July 8 said that Putting Kentucky First had spent $2 million on television ads so far.
Heading into the election, Kentucky is a Republican trifecta. This race will decide the state’s trifecta status until at least the 2020 state legislative elections. If Bevin wins, Republicans will maintain their trifecta control of the state, while a Beshear or Hicks victory would result in neither party having trifecta control.
A trifecta exists when one political party simultaneously holds the governor’s office and majorities in both state legislative chambers. Right now, there are 22 Republican trifectas, 14 Democratic trifectas, and 14 divided governments where neither party holds trifecta control.